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#2975051 - 02/11/19 05:13 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: dfcas]
Synthoid Offline
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Originally Posted By: dfcas
I'm more interested in a hardware solution and I'm investigating a Nord A1. Is it user friendly?


It's nice but expensive.




Lots of other suggestions given for more affordable keyboards. I'd recommend visiting a local music store and auditioning some synths if you can.
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#2975053 - 02/11/19 05:39 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: Synthoid]
JerryA Offline
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Originally Posted By: Synthoid

Lots of other suggestions given for more affordable keyboards.



thu

The A1 is a well built synth which packs a lot of features. However it's feature to price ratio is not a significant asset.

Also bear in mind that while it has presets and lots of knobs, it is not one-knob-per-function. There are some screens to be read as you navigate the instrument .... (see below)


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#2975055 - 02/11/19 05:51 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: JerryA]
Marzzz Offline
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Originally Posted By: JerryA
(Corey Henry with Hammond and Moog Voyager. The Moog speaks at 3.15)



Well, that was amazing...

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#2975058 - 02/11/19 06:21 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: JerryA]
RudyS Offline
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Originally Posted By: JerryA
Originally Posted By: Synthoid

Lots of other suggestions given for more affordable keyboards.



thu

The A1 is a well built synth which packs a lot of features. However it's feature to price ratio is not a significant asset.

Also bear in mind that while it has presets and lots of knobs, it is not one-knob-per-function. There are some screens to be read as you navigate the instrument .... (see below)



You can argue the definition of "one-knob-per function". The A1 has some small LCD's, but it is to read out what 1 knob is doing. So there is never a menu type of structure behind it. The are sometimes 2 functions per knob with shift engaged. Some global settings do need to be set by some "menu diving". For me personally the A1 feels like a 1 knob per function synth, but of course it's not a Moog (aka a Real 1 knob per function).

That said, I wouldn't recommend the A1 for a beginner. Mostly because it is not that intuitive to program due to the oscillator algorithms and layout. I do really like the sound of my A1, and now I'm used to it, I can build a lot of different patches on it. Very flexibel live synth..
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#2975063 - 02/11/19 07:26 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: RudyS]
JerryA Offline
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Originally Posted By: RudyS
You can argue the definition of "one-knob-per function".


Not me. wink I misspoke Rudy. The issue is not one-knob-per function but that there is complexity in the oscillator section which doesn't lend itself to muscle memory, correct?

Originally Posted By: RudyS
That said, I wouldn't recommend the A1 for a beginner. Mostly because it is not that intuitive to program due to the oscillator algorithms and layout. I do really like the sound of my A1, and now I'm used to it, I can build a lot of different patches on it. Very flexibel live synth..


It packs a lot into very little. thu

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#2975074 - 02/11/19 09:22 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: JerryA]
dfcas Offline
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Registered: 07/14/17
Posts: 21
I live in a small town in West Virginia, and there is no store I can go to and see synths. Also, driving is difficult for me so I can't go into Pittsburgh. I pretty much have to window shop from home and take my chances.

I play at home, and often I just pick a song on youtube and play along, or play along with a radio station I stream and play along with whatever comes on. Great ear training. I mostly listen to classic rock from the 60's.70's, and 80's, so i'd rather set up some presets and push a button and go.

I'd prefer a semi weighted action as synth actions usually feel much lighter and different than my A100 or SK1.

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#2975122 - 02/11/19 12:42 PM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: dfcas]
RudyS Offline
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I don’t think you will like the keybed of A1 then! It’s very light and “springy”. Its actually one of the few things I dislike of the A1.
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#2975126 - 02/11/19 01:02 PM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: RudyS]
CEB Offline
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If you want to learn subtractive synthesis for less than $1000 then a Studiologic Sledge. If you want something that sounds good maybe a Waldorf Blofeld keyboard. Still not sure if you want a synth or a rompler.


Edited by CEB (02/11/19 01:05 PM)
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#2975234 - 02/11/19 09:14 PM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: CEB]
J. Dan Offline
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Everybody's been beating around it but it hasn't been clarified, thus, there are a very wide variety of options suggested that are incongruent. Let's start with a base of terminology:

monosynth - these synthesizers play one note at a time and typically have knob per function or close to it. Good for bass lines, leads, and sound effects. May or may not have patch storage. Most famous historical example: Moog Model D (minimoog)

Polysynth - like the monosynth, sounds are created typically turning knobs to adjust one of 3 distinct sections: 1) Oscillator (basis of the sound) 2) Filter (shape the sound) 3) amplifier (control volume transients....sharp or slow attack or release). The main difference is these can play chords, not just one note at a time. Some can even split the keyboard Andy play multiple sounds simultaneously. Patch storage, or presets, are much more common though not guaranteed. Early examples were the Proohet 5, Oberheim SEM, OBX, etc, and Jupiter 8, though maybe one of the earliest was the Yamaha CS line. There are a TON of modern polysynths on the market.
ROMpler - these essentially use permanent samples (recordings) of other instruments. Most of the time, it would be the best way to digitally replicate a piano, or a saxophone, or a violin, etc. but it can also contain samples of instruments from the last 2 categories, so that you can have a wide palette of "presets" at your fingertips, but with less editing. Think about it his way. When you play a Hammond, as part of the performance, have 9 drawbars each with 8 positions you can manipulate to alter the sound as you play. In a ROMpler, they may have a patch of 888000000 and another one of 888888888 and you can pick one or the other, but you can't manipulate them in real time.

That's the essence of the question of what you want. If you want to grab knobs and make your own sounds, and manipulate in the fly, you need a "knobby" synth. If you're just going to pull up a preset and play it as is, you would be spending a LOT of money on features you'll never use in an analog or VA (knobby) synth compared to the huge library of ready to go sounds in a ROMpler.

If you can clarify that, we can drill into useful suggestions.
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#2975867 - 02/15/19 06:33 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: dfcas]
Synthoid Offline
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Have we reached a decision yet? smile
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#2975869 - 02/15/19 06:45 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: Synthoid]
paulmapp8306 Offline
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I have another suggestion.

Id use the SK1-73 as a control board - it has the right action and you already own it. Then pick up a Novation Peak. Great synth - lots of knobs with some small amount of menu diving - but its limited and intuitive. Lots of presets to play with.

If you dont want to pay that much, and dont mind a little more menu diving (but still with lots of hands on) the DM12 module. Its not as good as the peak though. For a touch more than the Peak you could get a DSI Rev 2 8 voice desktop. Its a touch call between the Peak and DSi - BUT I think the peak covers more ground (and you dont know what you really want to do yet) including some FM sounds and wavetables.

but - definately use the SK1 as your control board at this point - unless you can get a suitable synth with a Keyboard, used, at the right price.

The other option is to try softsynths provided you have a suitable PC. There are many free ones, and a whole bunch at low cost. you may need a Midi to usb converter. The SK1 does have both midi AND a usb out - but I dont know if the usb carries midi data or if its for FW updates and the like only. Either way thats likely your cheapest option - BUT you will loose hands on control of those knobs which may not be what you want. It will teach you synthesis though.


Edited by paulmapp8306 (02/15/19 06:52 AM)
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#2975890 - 02/15/19 09:01 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: paulmapp8306]
AnotherScott Offline
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A possible problem with the SK1 as a controller for synth work is the lack of pitch and mod wheels.
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#2975895 - 02/15/19 09:10 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: AnotherScott]
dfcas Offline
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No decision yet. Still enjoying the thinking/shopping process.

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#2975946 - 02/15/19 11:48 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: Synthoid]
GRollins Offline
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Originally Posted By: Synthoid
Have we reached a decision yet? smile





I'm afraid to say more without some feedback from the OP. It's hard to guess what might work without some sort of answers to the questions posed above. You can drown someone in suggestions, but a lot--maybe most--of them will be wide of the mark.

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#2976135 - 02/16/19 10:16 PM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: GRollins]
David Emm Offline
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After following the thread for a while, I feel even more convinced that the OP would be better off with a Prophet '08 or Rev2. Here's why: they're set up in the most friendly manner for teaching subtractive synthesis, whose basics apply across most other forms of it. If he starts out able to FEEL his way along and experiment a bit, it'll sink in better than a month of tutorials. All of the other current polyphonics are either much more Virus-pricey or take alternate approaches like the Roland JD-Xa. A Prophet is the most MiniMoog-like in use and fits his budget. Besides, your first synth rarely ends up being your best; you have to start somewhere so you can learn how to assess your next one(s). I also get the feeling that as an SK player, he'll likely prefer a 5-octave instrument. A newbie should have every advantage they can get. My 7¢ more.
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#2976137 - 02/17/19 12:06 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: AnotherScott]
paulmapp8306 Offline
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its not flawless, but you can do both with foot controllers if you need those options.

Ultimately the OP is wanting to "dip his toes in" and "learn". he can do that using the sky and models (and some a lot cheaper than even the Deep Mind) . If he gets into it and whats to use the odd features, he can add a nice controller boards - or a cheaper control surface with knobs and sliders.
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#2976138 - 02/17/19 12:09 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: David Emm]
paulmapp8306 Offline
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Originally Posted By: David Emm
After following the thread for a while, I feel even more convinced that the OP would be better off with a Prophet '08 or Rev2. Here's why: they're set up in the most friendly manner for teaching subtractive synthesis, whose basics apply across most other forms of it. If he starts out able to FEEL his way along and experiment a bit, it'll sink in better than a month of tutorials. All of the other current polyphonics are either much more Virus-pricey or take alternate approaches like the Roland JD-Xa. A Prophet is the most MiniMoog-like in use and fits his budget. Besides, your first synth rarely ends up being your best; you have to start somewhere so you can learn how to assess your next one(s). I also get the feeling that as an SK player, he'll likely prefer a 5-octave instrument. A newbie should have every advantage they can get. My 7¢ more.



Then why note a Studioloic Sledge 2? laid out in the same kind of way. granted fx/mods and as comprehensive BUT for learning its a fine board. Anit its less than half the price of a new Rev 2.
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#2976140 - 02/17/19 12:35 AM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: David Emm]
hardware Offline
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Sounds like the OP would like a Prophet or an Oberheim OBX.
They are way too expensive, so the newer versions have much better action, plus are cheaper.

The recent OB6 is an excellent Polyphonic and Monophonic synth.
It’s easier than learning cross modulation, etc. on the Prophets.

Think of Tom Sawyers intro and melody, think of Jump, think of synth string pads of the 80s, lots of OBX and OB8 recordings out there.
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#2977246 - 02/23/19 11:43 PM Re: Rocommend a synth? [Re: hardware]
uhoh7 Offline
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Registered: 02/19/19
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Loc: Idaho, USA
I'm sort of in the same boat as the OP, but I've been down the rabbit hole of current options on the Ytube for several months.

Holy C there are alot of options today.

Today I was thinking I out to just grab a Modx 61 which seemed so complete until I hit the lame sequencer (i know i can add one many ways). I really like that new behringer 101 clone, which has a ton of connectivity, and it just looks like a awesome first synth, and only 300 bucks.

For the OP and any not familar with the MS-101:
https://youtu.be/vXd-pXkueBA

Now considering OP's vision issue this might just be a option to consider, and it's not too pricey (looks just killer to me) Behringer Odyssey
https://youtu.be/KXpxwQgiP6Q
and
https://youtu.be/N_89CG6VlIc

Both of those will be released in the next month or so.

But I also need a good usable drum system...which had m looking at both the new volca drum, and the behringer 808 clone. I love the model D clone and the neutron.

Then I look at the system 8, peak, and the very affordable deep-mind 12, and a bunch of like style (including sledge) Polyphony!! I'm about to have a stroke just trying to keep the options straight.

I need to fire up the RT3 and calm down....I can turn on the pedal solo and claim I have the oldest true synth fired up of maybe any member on the board LOL


L1062857 by unoh7, on Flickr


Edited by uhoh7 (02/24/19 12:10 AM)
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